Are you launching a new restaurant?
You’ve got the perfect location, menu, decor…
You think you’re ready
But wait how will customers know about it all.
Creating a restaurant marketing plan before you launch your restaurant is essential.
Most business owners avoid writing a business plan for their business because of its technicalities. Unfortunately, if you fail to plan it means you plan to fail. A detailed restaurant marketing plan can help your restaurant even before you serve your first dish. This post will give you an idea of some of the marketing strategies you won’t want to miss. I’ll show you ways to create your marketing plan to open a successful restaurant.
To get started, you need to visualize your goals, take advantage of your best features, know your limitations and learn to turn your limitation(s) into strength.
Share ideas with your workers
You must understand that no one is an island; we need each other to help us actualize our goals. Seek the advice of your team; you will be surprised with the fantastic ideas they may come up with. Furthermore, asking for their opinions makes them feel that they are part of your company’s big picture.
Recently, Marcus Lemonis on The Profit revamped an ice cream truck business. Before setting out on his planning he checked in with the staff to see how they felt the business could grow. Here’s what Marcus did:
He asked the right questions
You don’t expect to get the correct answers by asking the wrong questions. You need to ask questions like;
- What does your restaurant stand for?
- Who is your ideal customer?
- What area(s) do you need to work on?
- How can you reduce your cost of production without reducing quality?
- What are your competitors doing that you are not doing?
Answers to these questions put you on the right track. They’ll also help with your visual identity too.
Get samples of other restaurant marketing plans
After brainstorming with your workers, you also need to research other marketing plans
The best place to have varieties of marketing plans is through the internet. There are excellent examples to guide you in creating a great marketing plan for your restaurant. Check what competition is doing in your area and other towns similar to yours.
Strategize, execute and analyze
Record your ideas, goals and “workable” plans. It will keep you on track, show you if you are off track or not. Let it be explicit, and specific to avoid confusion. A good report includes practical steps to attain your goals; it should be detailed and not just “headlines.”
An example of a detailed marketing campaign plan:
- Date: December 14th-24th
- Campaign: “The 12 Days of Christmas, Family Special.”
- Small: Printed coupons in Daily Breeze newspaper
- Budget: $1800-$2000
- Sales increase goal from last Christmas dinner: 15-21%
- Mode of analyzing campaign success: Keep and count used coupons compare to total sales volume
Use the power of social media to promote your restaurant
One of the greatest advantages of this century is the social media; a lot of small businesses are competing fiercely with the “old timers” due to the power of social media. The best way to showcase your products online including your “chef specials” is taking top quality, mouth-watery photos. Social media such as Instagram, Facebook, Facebook ads, and Twitter is the best place to draw the attention of growling stomachs and regular foodies to your restaurant.
The power of reviews is still very much active today; you can create a platform for your restaurant to be reviewed by your satisfied customers. Such platforms include Google review and Yelp. Having a lot of positive reviews can speed up your sales. So, if your restaurant does not have a social media account, be proactive and sign up now.
Professional and consistent marketing materials are the most critical when your restaurant opens. Don’t wait to launch your website and get your unique brand identity. First impressions mean a lot and if your restaurant’s marketing materials look good then people will be excited to see if the food taste good. Don’t worry this is where I can help check out my restaurant web design and design services to get your restaurant’s brand identity perfect.
Create a calendar
Now that you have the goals and the strategy the next essential step in a good restaurant marketing plan is a details schedule of when you share the information. Don’t dump everything on the public at once use a simple strategy of building buzz by giving bits and pieces of what you’ll offer. Here’s a sample schedule
week 1: Coming soon
week 2: share about the location and surrounding area
week 3: photos of signature dishes
week 4: what makes this dining experience unique
week 5: grand opening
week 6: Specials for opening
With a plan like this, restaurant goers will be so curious to learn what it’s all about they’ll be lining up at your door before you know it.
This marketing plan will help any new restaurant launch with a big bang. And don’t stop at the opening this plan will work well for any big promotions you want to do in your restaurant moving forward.